It’s that time of year that most #fibromyalgia sufferers (including me) dread. As the seasons change from summer to autumn then winter (unless you are in Ozz :)) we know we will definitely have to suffer more than normal until our bodies adapt to the different temperatures.
According to Fibromyalgia-symptoms.org, there are five “major weather factors” that can affect our bodies. They are temperature, barometric pressure, humidity, precipitation and wind. We may not be able to control what the weather does, but we can take some steps to try and head off a #fibro flare before it occurs when it is time for a seasonal change.
Brian Barr solicitors say that so far, researchers have been unable to determine why the changes in weather affect sufferers, however, there are some possible explanations. Firstly, changes in temperature can affect sleep patterns. Getting plenty of sleep is really important if you have #fibromyalgia, and even small shifts in your sleep pattern can aggravate the condition. Secondly, as the seasons change, the amount of light you are exposed to can throw off your circadian rhythm (body clock), making you feel low and more tired than usual. Lastly, there may be a connection between low temperatures and pro-inflammatory cytokines, which appear to be connected to pain intensity.
New Life Outlook Fibromyalgia points out that it is not uncommon to hear someone with arthritis claiming their knee or hip can predict the weather better than a meteorologist. They always know in advance when a cold front or a rainstorm are moving in, with an almost scary accuracy. Many with one type of rheumatic condition or another, including #fibromyalgia, have made claims that the changes of weather will affect their pain levels, fatigue levels, or other various symptoms.
Researchers have found little scientific proof to back up the claim that fibromyalgia symptoms are affected by the weather and weather changes. A study done in 2013 claims that they could not find a correlation between fibromyalgia flare-ups or increased pain and weather changes.
Well, I don’t know about my fellow #fibro sufferers but whatever research shows there is no question of a doubt that the change of seasons affects our pain.
Some top tips to help you cope with this which I have written about before are –
- Studies show that a warm or hot bath can have a therapeutic effect.
- Make sure if you are going out that you dress in layers, that way if it gets warm you can take a layer off but if its cool you will not feel the drop in temperature.
- Check the weather daily as the season starts to prepare for each day.
- Pull out the heat pad to use just before you go for a sleep or a rest in the daytime.
- Make sure you are not in a draft.
- Try hand warmers, Stephen Soloway, MD, a rheumatologist says they can ease fibromyalgia.
- Cut down on alcohol as it can dilate blood vessels and cause heat loss.
- Make sure you get as much sleep as possible.
And finally, a poem to finish this post –
Dear Lord, please help me at this difficult time,
When the weather changes and gives me a very hard time,
My friendly Fibro gives me pain everywhere,
While it decides which season it wants to bear.
Backache, neck ache, even finger ache to name but a few,
It just gets tooo much for you know who,
I know when Spring has sprung I’ll be in less pain,
But until then Lord, can you hurry up and decide even if it’s going to rain.